American Home ~ ANGOL Szövegértés

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For many Americans, the home is the center of their lives. Home improvement television shows are very popular, as are home improvement mega-centers like Lowe's and The Home Depot. In some cultures, people keep the home entirely separate, even from close friends. In the United States, generally speaking, people enjoy showing off their homes to others, especially if they have put a lot of work, or money, into them.

If an American invites you for a home tour, even if it feels odd in your culture, the proper thing to do is to accept the invitation with enthusiasm. The homeowner may be exceptionally proud of rooms or home improvements that mean absolutely nothing to you, say a buried lawn sprinkler system, an elaborate home theater setup, or even a refurbished bathroom. A tour of a child's room will require an appropriate compliment, as will photographs of the children themselves.

One of the areas of the home that attracts the most passion among Americans is the kitchen. Bear in mind that attention to kitchen design and equipment often has no direct relationship with the homeowner's desire to or ability to cook. Avoid asking about the owner's cooking skills, or enthusiasm for cooking as a pastime, unless the owner brings the subject up.

Being a Good Guest 

In the United States, if you are invited to someone's home in advance for a dinner or meal, make an effort to be extra courteous by accepting or declining the invitation with plenty of time to spare. Arrange to arrive on time, neither early nor late. If, when you arrive, the hosts are still setting up the table, offer to help, and offer to help clear the table later on. Make a real effort to engage in conversation with the other guests, avoiding controversial conversational topics of course. If in doubt as to when to leave, wait for the first signs that the party is breaking up.

If you are invited to stay in someone's home overnight or for a few days, make sure you understand in advance how long you will be staying. Be on time. Take your hosts out to a restaurant for dinner at least once, or offer to contribute when food shopping. Keep the area you are staying in neat and orderly. Make sure you are available for meals when your hosts are; adapt to their schedule for most major activities, including bed and waking times. Offer to help with a few household or outdoor chores. If possible, leave the house occasionally to entertain yourself and to give your hosts time away from you, if only for a walk. Bring a small gift when you arrive, and send a thank you note after your stay.
Do not overstay your welcome. It is best to arrange a short stay in the first place, no more than a few days. If the length of your stay is open-ended, leave earlier rather than later.

(forrás: Life in the USA, by Elliot Essman, 2010)

Answer the questions!

  • What does the home mean for the american people?
  • What does it mean: home tour?
  • Why is the kitchen important?
  • What to do at a party?
  • How can you be a good guest?

What have you got to know about the american people? Can you say something about their character?

by: Szigetfalvi Andi
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